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Making Toast

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When his daughter, Amy-a gifted doctor, mother, and wife-collapsed and died from an asymptomatic heart condition, Roger Rosenblatt and his wife, Ginny, left their home on the South Shore of Long Island to move in with their son-in-law, Harris, and their three young grandchildren, six-year-old Jessica, four-year-old Sammy, and one year-old James, known as Bubbies. Long past the years of diapers, homework, and recitals, Roger and Ginny-Boppo and Mimi to the kids-quickly reaccustomed themselves to the world of small children: bedtime stories, talking toys, playdates, nonstop questions, and nonsequential thought. Though still reeling from Amy's death, they carried on, reconstructing a family, sustaining one another, and guiding three lively, alert, and tenderhearted children through the pains and confusions of grief. As he marveled at the strength of his son-in-law, a surgeon, and the tenacity and skill of his wife, a former kindergarten teacher, Roger attended each day to 'the one household duty I have mastered'-preparing the morning toast perfectly to each child's liking.

With the wit, heart, precision, and depth of understanding that has characterized his work, Roger Rosenblatt peels back the layers on this most personal of losses to create both a tribute to his late daughter and a testament to familial love. The day Amy died, Harris told Ginny and Roger, "It's impossible". Roger's story tells how a family makes the possible of the impossible.

176 pages, Hardcover

First published January 1, 2010

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About the author

Roger Rosenblatt

39 books127 followers
ROGER ROSENBLATT, whose work has been published in 14 languages, is the author of five New York Times Notable Books of the Year, and three Times bestsellers, including the memoirs KAYAK MORNING, THE BOY DETECTIVE, and MAKING TOAST, originally an essay in the New Yorker. His newest book is THE STORY I AM, a collection on writing and the writing life.

Rosenblatt has also written seven off-Broadway plays, notably the one-person Free Speech in America, that he performed at the American Place Theater, named one of the Times's "Ten Best Plays of 1991." Last spring at the Bay Street Theater in Sag Harbor, he performed and played piano in his play, Lives in the Basement, Does Nothing, which will go to the Staller Center for the Arts at Stony Brook, and the Flea Theater in New York in 2021. He also wrote the screenplay for his bestselling novel LAPHAM RISING, to star Frank Langella, Stockard Channing, and Bobby Cannavale, currently in production.

The Distinguished Professor of English and Writing at SUNY Stony Brook/Southampton, he formerly held the Briggs-Copeland appointment in creative writing at Harvard, where he earned his Ph.D. Among his honors are two George Polk Awards; the Peabody, and the Emmy, for his essays at Time magazine and on PBS; a Fulbright to Ireland, where he played on the Irish International Basketball Team; seven honorary doctorates; the Kenyon Review Award for Lifetime Literary Achievement; and the President's Medal from the Chautauqua Institution for his body of work.

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